GETTING AROUND

SUBWAY

The Beijing Subway is a rapid transit rail network that serves the urban and suburban districts of Beijing municipality. The network has 18 lines, 334 stations and 554 km of track in operation and is the second longest subway system in the world after the Shanghai Metro. The subway is the world's busiest in annual ridership, with 3.41 billion trips delivered in 2014, averaging 9.2786 million per day, with peak single-day ridership reaching 11.5595 million.

The existing network still cannot adequately meet the city's mass transit needs and extensive expansion plans call for 1,050 km (650 mi) of track by 2020.

  • Distance-based fare
    • The Beijing Subway switched from a fixed-fare to a distance-based fare schedule for all lines except the Airport Express on December 28, 2014. Fares start at ¥3 for a trip up to 6 km in distance, with ¥1 added for the next 6 km, for every 10 km thereafter until the trip distance reaches 32 km, and for every 20 km beyond the first 32 km. For example, a 40 km trip would cost ¥7. The Airport Express costs ¥25 per ride.
    • Children below 1.3 meters (51 in) in height ride for free when accompanied by a paying adult. Senior citizens over the age of 65, individuals with physical disabilities, retired revolutionary cadres, police and army veterans who had been wounded in action, military personnel and People's Armed Police can ride the subway for free.
       
  • Fare collection
    • The subway's fare collection gates accept single-ride tickets and the Yikatong fare card. The Yikatong, also known as The Beijing Transportation Smart Card, is an integrated circuit card that stores credit for the subway, urban and suburban buses and e-money for other purchases. Riders can purchase tickets and add credit to Yikatong card at ticket counters or vending machines in every station. The Yikatong card itself must be purchased at the ticket counter.The subway's fare collection gates accept single-ride tickets and the Yikatong fare card. The Yikatong, also known as The Beijing Transportation Smart Card, is an integrated circuit card that stores credit for the subway, urban and suburban buses and e-money for other purchases. Riders can purchase tickets and add credit to Yikatong card at ticket counters or vending machines in every station. The Yikatong card itself must be purchased at the ticket counter. 
    • Riders must insert the ticket or tap the card at the gate both before entering and exiting the station. To prevent fraud, riders are required to complete their journeys within four hours upon entering the subway.[12] If the four-hour limit is exceeded, a surcharge of ¥3 is imposed.
    • To enter a station, the Yikatong card must have a minimum balance of ¥3.00. Each Yikatong card is allowed to be overdrawn once. The overdrawn amount is deducted when credits are added to the card.
TAXI

Taking a taxi is the most convenient way for newcomers to travel around a metropolis like Beijing. There are over 66,000 taxis running in every corner of the city.

Cab calling service is available. Passengers can book a cab 24 hours in advance by phone, internet or mobile phone through the citywide reservation system. Passengers who book cabs at the six urban districts during the peak traffic time four hours in advance are insured to be successful except those who break an appointment more than twice a year. The reservation hot line is 96103.

Note

  1. The morning rush hours is from 7:00 to 9:00, and the evening rush hours is from 17:00 to 19:00.
  2. The price is calculated exactly by every 500 meters (547 yards) and every 2.5 minutes.
  3. The price will be rounded to the whole number of Chinese Yuan. For example, CNY 15.4 will be rounded down to CNY 15, and CNY 15.6 will be rounded up to CNY 16.
  4. The toll for an expressway or a bridge should be extra paid by the passengers.

Generally, it will cost CNY 100 - 200 from the Capital Airport to the city proper of Beijing, according to different distance. Badaling Great Wall is about 65 kilometers (40 miles) from the downtown area, which need more than CNY 200 to cover the expense by meter. Ask before getting on the cab, for most taxis do not meter while getting to those scenic spots far from the city center, then you should negotiate with the driver about the fare. From Tiananmen Square to Badaling Great Wall, it costs a little bit more than CNY 200, excluding the highway toll fare and additional fares for drive at night or at a speed lower than 12 kilometers (7.5 miles) per hour. To be notice, there is an empty run of about 50 kilometers (31 miles) while returning to the city center. So, few drivers would like to have a single run to the spot. To rent a vehicle for a round trip, it perhaps costs you CNY 500 at least.

TRAIN

As the busiest rail transportation hub in China, Beijing has many railway trunks passing through the city. Traveling to and from the city by rail cannot be more convenient. Every day over seven-hundred trains run to and fro, linking the city with almost every corner of the country. There are even several high-speed trains shuttling daily between this city and major destinations such as Shanghai, Xian, Wuhan, Guangzhou and Harbin. In addition, there is inter-city high speed type to Tianjin, whose running time is about half an hour. However, the busy rail transportation in the city also makes it difficult to get tickets, especially during major holidays such as National Day and Spring Festival. Passengers are advised to buy tickets in advance during these periods of time.

This city has four railway stations in total for passenger transportation:

  • Beijing Railway Station
  • West Railway Station
  • South Railway Station
  • North Railway Station
AIRPORT

Beijing Capital International Airport is situated in the Shunyi District of the city, about 25 km (about 15.5 miles) northeast of Tiananmen Square, and is China's busiest and most important international airport. It consists of three terminal buildings. The high standard of services and facilities has attracted 66 airlines to operate here. Currently, the airport has flight connections to some 88 domestic and 69 foreign cities.

This city has four railway stations in total for passenger transportation:

  • Terminal 1 of Capital Airport
    Just occupying an area of 60,000 square meters, Terminal 1 has the longest history originating from January, 1980. While the larger T2 and T3 were put into use successively, T1 has been the operational base for Hainan Airlines' domestic flights. Currently, there is a convenient passage linking T1 and T2, which just takes 5 minutes on foot.
  • Terminal 2 of Capital Airport
    Covering an area of 336,000 square meters, T2 was originally built on October, 1995 and put into use on November, 1999. Although it is the extension project for T1, T2 was built much larger than the previous one. Before the opening of T3, it played the vital role in the aerial transportation in China. Currently, T2 is the busiest terminal taking on the domestic airlines to and from this city although the Air China in T3 supplies frequent domestic flights. On the other hand, housing over 30 international airlines companies, this terminal is also one of the major ports for passengers to entry into and exit from China.
  • Terminal 3 of Capital Airport
    T3 of Airport has been attracting much public attention since coming into use in 2008. It has a unique modernistic design and is the second largest airport terminal in the world, only after Terminal 3 of the Dubai International Airport. Some 26 national and international airlines have moved into this building that runs 2900 meters long from north to south.